2 Chronicles 36:6—Was Jehoiakim carried to Babylon or did he die in Jerusalem?

Problem: The Chronicler declares that Nebuchadnezzar “came up against him [Jehoiakim], and bound him in bronze fetters to carry him off to Babylon.” But elsewhere “Jehoiakim rested with his fathers” (2 Kings 24:6) and was “buried with the burial of a donkey, dragged and cast out beyond the gates of Jerusalem” (Jer. 22:19; cf. 36:30).

Solution: Apparently, Jehoiakim was bound and fettered with the intention “to carry him off to Babylon” (2 Chron. 36:6), but he was slain instead, and his body ignominiously treated “and cast out beyond the gates of Jerusalem” (Jer. 22:19). The phrase “rested with his fathers” (2 Kings 24:6) refers to death, not necessarily to a burial in the same place. Of all the kings of Judah, Jehoiakim is the only one whose official burial is not mentioned.

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This excerpt is from When Critics Ask: A Popular Handbook on Bible Difficulties (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1992). © 2014 Norman Geisler and Thomas Howe. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Click here to purchase this book.